More people living with incurable illness will have access to enhanced care in their own homes, thanks to a new ‘virtual ward’ being created by Severn Hospice. 

The charity has more than 20 beds across its two main sites in Shrewsbury and Telford. 

The new ‘virtual ward’ means ten more people will be able to receive ward-equivalent care and still stay in their own home. 


Hospice consultants will oversee and co-ordinate the patient’s care daily, and the patient would have access to ward services such as complementary therapy, creative therapy and chaplaincy just as if they were staying at the hospice. Any specialist medical equipment needed would also be provided, with the support of other healthcare agencies and partners using existing systems and processes. 

Becky Richardson, Director of Care, said: “This is about how we can give more people access to the level and quality of care they need, enabling them to be at home. 

“We would triage patients for hospice admission just as we do now and while the wards might be virtual, the care we’ll be giving is very real,” said Becky. 


The initiative is the hospice’s contribution to a national strategy aimed at improving palliative care services.  

Locally, the Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Integrated Care System – the new healthcare commissioning organisation for the area – is seeking to maintain as much hospital bed capacity as it can. Adding capacity at the hospice, alongside care homes, supports that objective. 


Becky added: “The pandemic really underlined the importance of protecting hospital bed capacity and confirmed how valuable our role was in supporting the NHS with that. We also saw what could be achieved for patients by enhancing our community services.  

“Virtual wards mean we can give more people the specialist caring services only the hospice can provide,” she said. 


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